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'The Big H' arts festival returns to Main Street

Visitors to the second Big H will enjoy local art, music and delicious food on Sept. 20 and 21. Reminder Publications submitted photo
By Courtney Llewellyn

Reminder Assistant Editor

HAMPDEN The first year of the Hampden Art Guild's "Big H" arts festival was "very successful," according to one of the event's coordinators, Patricia Pomeroy, who is also an artist.

"It was fun, everybody had a good time," she said. Approximately 500 people visited the festival on Main Street in 2007. Now in its second year, however, she hopes that it grows. "I'd like to make it as big as we can," she continued.

The festival will be taking place Sept. 20 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sept. 21 from noon to 4 p.m.

Pomeroy said the Big H came about because the art guild had hosted shows in the past but always saw poor attendance. The group wanted to showcase the skills of the artists in town so that everyone could enjoy them.

"There's a lot of talent in this town," Pomeroy stated. "This is a way to get it out there for people to see. It's good for the kids because a lot of schools are cutting arts programs and this is a way for them to see the different ways they can express themselves."

In addition to displaying the artwork from the members of the Hampden Art Guild, the Big H will showcase work from Minnechaug Regional High School and Wilbraham & Monson Academy students, music from local musicians and more. To be a part of the festival, artists have to be Hampden residents.

New this year will be demonstrations from a basket weaver and a wood carver.

Meals will once again be provided by the Federated Community Church, with additional food being offered by the Lions Club and S.W. Andwood Construction Inc.

Pomeroy said she is always looking for new artists for the festival. The art guild will begin hanging artwork for the show on Sept. 13 from 10 a.m. to noon at Academy Hall, so anyone interested in participating should contact Pomeroy as soon as possible at 566-8628.

To make the Big H more enjoyable, Pomeroy suggested checking out "Cruise Day," an antique car rally on Sept. 21 at the Hampden Nursery.

Daily Events

Art and floral exhibits and Historical Museum -- both days

Hampden Art Guild show and sale at Academy Hall

High school students art show and sale at Town Hall

Hampden Garden Club arrangements at Academy Hall

Historical Society Museum at Academy Hall

"Views of Hampden" art exhibit in the library

Trustee Tea -- 2 to 4 p.m. in the library

For the kids -- Balloon sculpting, face painting and sidewalk art

Sept. 20

Music at Town Hall

11 a.m. -- Dick Chase, Irish Music -- "The Real Deal"

Noon -- Randy Pascal, banjo & mandolin

1 p.m. -- John Root, music of the Gaslight Era, 1890 - 1920

2 p.m. -- Lauren Comstock & Steve Andwood, acoustic classic rock

3 p.m. -- Dana Vicalvi Band, rock 'n' roll

Added Attractions

9:30 a.m. -- Basket making by Rita Vail at Town Hall

11:30 a.m. -- Next Step Dance Studio, children's performance at the church parking lot

12:30 p.m. -- Wood carving by Bruce Jackson at Town Hall; print making by Dorothy Fritz at Town Hall

All day -- Quilt making by Glennice Flynn at Town Hall; Goosebumps Writers Club; frame restoration, scrap booking -- unscheduled at the moment

Federated Community Church

7:30 -- 10 a.m. -- Gourmet pancake breakfast

11 a.m. -- 2 p.m. -- Bake sale, both days

Noon -- 3 p.m. -- Lobster roll lunch; baked potato bar; and Izzy's Cheesecakes, both days

3:30 p.m. -- Classical and jazz in the Sanctuary

5:30 p.m. -- Steak roast dinner (call 566-3711 for reservations by Sept. 19; $15 per person)

Sept. 21

Music at Town Hall

1 p.m. -- Jay Mankita's "Veggie Voyager" (kid-friendly concert)

2 p.m. -- South Road Ramblers, an old time string band

3 p.m. -- A quick preview of "Damn Yankees" by the Theater Guild of Hampden

Added Attractions

12:30 p.m. -- Egg decorating by Terri Bailey at Town Hall; Next Step Dance Studio, children's performance at the church parking lot

2 p.m. -- Reading from the "Library Cat" by Karla Grant

All day -- Goosebumps Writers Club

Additional Information

Hot dogs, hamburgers and drinks by the Lions Club at Town Hall; free popcorn donated by S.W. Andwood Construction Inc.

Parking will be at the Federated Community Church and Green Meadows School.